A Spring Song to Share

SCN_0040By Liz Buchanan

Here is a fun song and movement game that I often do in early childhood classrooms in the spring. Written by my CMN colleague Nancy Hershatter, it’s extremely simple, yet children love this activity.

In the spring, classrooms are often busy with seed-planting activities, and this song is a fun way for young children to act out the life cycle of seeds and plants.  When you do the song, talk about the different types of flowers, vegetables and trees that grow from seeds.  How high does each one grow?  How do they make new seeds? Ask children which plant they’d choose to be. 

It’s also interesting that musically, that this song ascends a major scale.  As the notes get higher, so does the growing plant.  You can talk with children about notes of the scale by singing a simple major scale on do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-do.  Encourage the children to move their hands or their whole bodies slowly from a low position to a high one, while singing the ascending pitches. 

I first learned this song from Nancy Hershatter and Tina Stone, who are fellow members of The Children’s Music Network. This organization is a great source of songs and musical activities for children.  I have learned many of the songs I use in the classroom from members of CMN.  In fact, when I posted this song recently on CMN’s very active e-list, several other people shared their own songs about seeds, plants and trees. If you would like to learn more great and classroom-tested songs, consider joining The Children’s Music Network!  If you’re already a member, invite your colleagues to join.  May is membership month, and you can see the many benefits of joining CMN here.

Once I Was A Seed

By Nancy Hershatter

Children begin curled up on floor like sleeping seeds.  Once I was a seed / Sleeping in the ground / Then the sun came out, and …Then the rain came down!  Use a rain stick or make a sound like rain falling, and children can turn their heads and say ‘ah’ to take a ‘drink.’ During the following lines, children slowly stand up, sprouting “leaves” and reaching for sky. My leaves sprouted out / Reaching for the sky / I grew and grew / And now I’m ten feet high.

Click here for a sound file.

Liz Buchanan is President of The Children’s Music Network. This item is reprinted from her web page.

2 comments

  1. I love this song, and like you said Liz, so do all of the pre-schoolers and K-2 classes that I meet with at this time of year.
    Piggybacking on this scale idea, I recently wrote the following “caterpillar to butterfly”song!
    Here’s a caterpillar do
    Munching on some leaves re
    Munching on the grass mi
    Munching on the seeds fa
    Crawling up the trunk sol
    Crawling way up high la
    Curling up to go to sleep ti
    Waking up as a butterfly do
    I play all of this on a small xylophone of glockenspiel, and then follow it with singing “Fly…….” and playing:
    do-ti-la-sol-la-ti-do-ti-la-sol-la-ti-do-ti-la-sol-fa-me-re-do
    ending with the words “Butterfly!” There were lots of little butterflies flying around my pre-school classes today.
    Thanks for sharing Liz, and thanks for writing it Nancy!

    1. When I joined CMN in the early 90s, I was dpeley involved in writing songs on assignment for family entertainment and educational companies that were held in some disdain by some of the aficionados of homegrown music who fastidiously avoided traveling the blatantly commercial road. I was then and remain unapologetic about working with companies who sometimes behave badly, but by associating with the kindhearted, peaceful CMN folks, who seemed more worried about having gender or age bias in their songs than encountering a bear in the Black Hills of North Carolina, I began to change into a gentler, more thoughtful person. I actually revised some lyrics after attending Bonnie Lockhart’s anti-bias seminar at an early regional gathering. I have become a better listener, a more patient and demonstrative father and husband, and a more commercially successful songwriter! I still hunt and drive a big van and fertilize my lawn I didn’t go nuts on the happy train but I am eternally grateful to those who have helped me grow in wonderful ways I might have otherwise missed.

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